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Honda Insight vs Toyota Prius

Honda Insight dashboard

Toyota Prius dashboard

So I gave back the loaner Insight to Honda yesterday. Honestly, I was sorry to see it go.

Here are my impressions of the Insight divided into my likes and dislikes and most are direct comparisons with my current car, a Toyota Prius. Realise I am no motoring expert and these are extremely subjective opinions!

Likes:

  • The Insight is quite a bit more responsive than the Prius
  • It has a lot better external visibility, especially rearward and the two side mirrors are very generously sized
  • The driver’s seat gives very good lumbar support
  • The radio sounds a lot better (more bass, less tinny) than the Prius

Dislikes:

  • The dashboard in the Insight is very confusing and hard to read information from. Honda could definitely do with some input from usability experts here. The dashboard in the Prius is far easier to find information from as you drive
  • There is significantly less rear passenger legroom in the Insight
  • Although the emissions figures for the Insight are roughly similar to the Prius (101-105g CO2/km), it is slightly less fuel efficient (I got 5.5l/100km (46.12mpg US) in the Insight compared to 5.1l/100km (42.77mpg US) for the Prius)
  • The one button for Eco Mode means it is not possible to control the EV mode as easily as with the Prius – this is important as there are times driving the Prius I want to be in EV mode for fuel economy reasons

Other opinions –

  • My wife found the Insight passenger seat too hard for her taste (the lumbar support I liked!)
  • My six year old didn’t like that his seat belt was harder to close in the Insight (seats might be narrower and thus booster partially covers seatbelt buckle)
  • My three year old liked the flowers on the side of the loaner Insight Honda gave me!!!

The bottom line for the Insight is that it is a nice drive. It is about ?3,000 cheaper than the Prius to buy in Andalucia (depending on options you are looking at ?18k for the basic Insight vs ?21k for the basic Prius). This biggest issue I had with the Insight was the dashboard but if I could save ?3,000 on the purchase price without sacrificing on emissions, I’d put up with poor information display.